holidays

Psalms Pieces

There are so many beautiful Psalms in the Bible.  Do you have a favorite?  Do you know the significance of this book?  One man struggles in his faith, wanting to surrender and know God on a deeper level.  He sings praises to God with a longing heart.  It is not always an easy book of the Bible to understand, there is as – I used to complain about when younger:  “a lot of thee’s and tho’s.”  🙂

As we continue into the Holy days; Good Friday and Passover, Palm Sunday and Easter, let us yearn for God the same way David did.

(I am referring to the Living Bible, as I appreciate the stillness of the language.)

Psalm 19 The heavens are telling the glory of God; they are a marvelous display of his craftsmanship. Day and night they keep on telling about God. 3-4 Without a sound or word, silent in the skies, their message reaches out to all the world. The sun lives in the heavens where God placed it and moves out across the skies as radiant as a bridegroom going to his wedding, or as joyous as an athlete looking forward to a race! The sun crosses the heavens from end to end, and nothing can hide from its heat.

7-8 God’s laws are perfect. They protect us, make us wise, and give us joy and light. God’s laws are pure, eternal, just. 10 They are more desirable than gold. They are sweeter than honey dripping from a honeycomb. 11 For they warn us away from harm and give success to those who obey them.

12 But how can I ever know what sins are lurking in my heart? Cleanse me from these hidden faults. 13 And keep me from deliberate wrongs; help me to stop doing them. Only then can I be free of guilt and innocent of some great crime.

14 May my spoken words and unspoken thoughts be pleasing even to you, O Lord my Rock and my Redeemer.

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Psalm 138 Lord, with all my heart I thank you. I will sing your praises before the armies of angels.  I face your Temple as I worship, giving thanks to you for all your loving-kindness and your faithfulness, for your promises are backed by all the honor of your name.  When I pray, you answer me and encourage me by giving me the strength I need.

Every king in all the earth shall give you thanks, O Lord, for all of them shall hear your voice. Yes, they shall sing about Jehovah’s glorious ways, for his glory is very great. Yet though he is so great, he respects the humble, but proud men must keep their distance. Though I am surrounded by troubles, you will bring me safely through them. You will clench your fist against my angry enemies! Your power will save me. The Lord will work out his plans for my life—for your loving-kindness, Lord, continues forever. Don’t abandon me—for you made me.

 

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holidays

Lent Pieces

As a former Lutheran, Lent was never really a big deal.  I cringe to say that.  The church was decorated in lovely purple, there were palm fronds.  The children did an Easter pageant, adults did special readings.  We never gave anything up for Lent, I didn’t even know that was a thing until 15 years ago, when it was discussed at a spiritual retreat.

I’m not revising this blog to convert anyone to Catholicism, but I do have to say — this religion really takes apart the Word of God and applies to life.  You don’t HAVE TO give up meat, or give up anything at all.  But for me, after reading about Lent, what it is, why it’s lived, celebrated and taught; I learned that if something is coming between me and God – then that is what should be given up.

I have a list a mile long of what I should not only give up for Lent, but give up all together!  Don’t we all?  Make an effort.  Pray for sanity and endurance.

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life experience

Learning Pieces

For the past fifteen years I have been a spiritual seeker (and hope to continue).  I have attended a variety of churches, Unitarian Universalist taught me how to care for Mother Earth, how to make change with social justice and I met a minister there who challenged my beliefs (in a good way), by asking me to define what I believed and to shake out the old cobwebs of my childhood.  With the task, I created a “mission statement” of my beliefs.  It still involved Jesus and a Christian approach to my life, so “questioning everything” was no longer filling my spirit.

I moved onto Episcopalian, which became a church similar to my protestant upbringing.  But this church was also missing the other part of my life; my husband.  We all reach enlightenment in our own time, but a longtime prayer had been, that one day – we would walk the path together.

The pieces were all coming together.

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Through the many years of soul searching; I semi-regularly attended retreats, classes and an occasional mass; all at Catholic monasteries, retreat centers or churches.  The Catholic beliefs pulled at my heart, I always felt great peace in my spirit when I was in the presence of people from this religion.   It was a calm I had never experienced before.

I began Spiritual Direction late last summer.  I was evolving in more than spiritual ways, I was coming from full-circle from cancer.  I was shaking off the old and injured parts of my psyche, ready for new.   It was there in those gatherings of discussion, did I realize that I wanted what I had always experienced in monasteries and classes, I wanted to become Catholic.

Symbolism, rituals, peace of heart, calm spirit, the focus on prayer, the great love that Jesus has for me, the desire for something so much greater than myself.

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I now attend weekly RCIA classes to become an official Catholic.  It is a place to ask every question pertaining to the Catholic church, faith, “why do they A, B or C.”  I was ignorant in the parts of Catholicism I didn’t know.  There are still questions and I haven’t got the rosary down yet, but I’m a work in progress.

And now, I walk the path; separately and together, with my hubby.  It seems that this “faith thing” is now coming together!

#beblessed  #faithisnotareligion #wisdom

 

 

life experience

Pieces of Expectation

If you are anything like me, and have a little trouble with control, then this post is for you!

It’s pretty easy to look at the life of someone else, particularly a loved one and think – they should be doing A, B or C.  If they did those things, it would go so much smoother for them.  It just makes more sense than how they are doing it.  And sometimes we interject our opinions into their lives, whether it was asked for or not (generally; not).  Our expectations for their lives, cause drama, hostility, brokenness.

Isn’t it enough to manage our own life?

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This is a problem for a lot of mothers with their adult children.  I was guilty of this and then a war commenced, years passed and she unexpectedly died.  There was not time to repair and forgive.

But don’t let that happen to you, because it’s tragic — don’t let it happen because you are growing in faith and wisdom and caring for yourself.  And when you can’t; you hand it over to your Heavenly Father.  Do the same for those you love.  Hand them over and remember, God works in mysterious and incredible ways, He will not only provide for you, but for your family, loved ones.

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